EDITORIAL

Food for thought

Cycling

 

A poll conducted by news app Inshorts – with a participation of over 40,000 respondents from Tier I and Tier II urban communities in the age group 18-35 years across the country – says that nearly 93 per cent of urban citizens think news channels are partial or favour one political party or the other. A few days back, the Election Commission had asked Doordarshan to desist from extending any “preferential or disproportionate” airtime coverage in favour of any political party. The general impression is that Doordarshan is used by the ruling party at the Centre to further its political agenda. But when it comes to private news channels, biases or prejudices are there for anyone to see. True, these channels are owned by those with mighty political connections or those who are themselves in active politics. However, since the press has a huge responsibility in an evolving democracy like ours – and we cannot afford to ignore the many aberrations still characterizing our democracy – and since press freedom is sacrosanct too, partiality in covering major events, giving advantage to one political party or the other, militates against the very tenet of press freedom. Add to all this the reality of paid or fake news. The trends are disturbing. If viewers are beginning to lose their faith on news channels when it comes to articulating or editorializing both news and views with a clear bias, the TV channels are themselves to blame. So isn’t it that they must make a course correction sooner rather than later so the people’s trust is restored and so that democracy is served better too?